Lightening

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One, two, three, four…steps, reps, seconds, heartbeats, minutes, quarter hours, half hours, hours, quarter days, half days, days, weeks, months is all a continuum no matter what we are doing.

In three minutes how many arrows may be fired?

In two minutes how many hurdles may be jumped, how many yards on a track covered, how punches and kicks delivered on the bag?

In 90 seconds how many lunges, crunches, and pushups can be done?

In thirty seconds how many times can you vertical throw, catch-squat, then vertical throw a soft medicine ball?

Short intervals are lightening bolts in our training lives. The difference from lightening: we can harness this training energy. Our bodies are like the Earth and the training we do is the lightening feeding into us.

The movements, momentum, and good form matter…the pace you intuitively know is what you need to progress, i.e. to come back again tomorrow and train again.

It’s a beautiful freedom to have and use, so gratitude inspiring each day.

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Adapt or Die: Shot at the Title (or) Adapting a Title

It is just like I was as a kid, sitting before the test, remembering a passage read, and looking at multiple choice picks for what the title of the passage in the test question should have been…over thought it then, and…

Flashback to now.

What in the world do I name this book?

And is it worth re-titling?

Is it as simple as republishing a new edition with a different title?

And then, what do I do with the blog?

Maybe while I figure all of this out, I’ll get my camera fixed so I can post new visual content too. Can’t take good shots with what I’ve got.

All these questions and more, on deck.

New Title Needed?

 

 

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The woman seated by me on the airplane was experienced in marketing words. Her confident conclusion was that Farm Your Training Day: An American Dream of Sustainable Personal Fitness is a bad title. Her tone was respectfully hushed, saving this unknown author from the ignominy of being known onboard as a bad-title-picker. I had visions of bad-title-air-marshals tackling me on the tarmac, and burning my books.

Truth is, my fellow passenger’s observation touched a nagging, bothersome, itchy insecurity I’ve often felt about my book title: if people have to read the book to get the title, that’s not a good title. The title is supposed to prompt people to dive into the book, not remain opaque to all who don’t first delve. A title should be a lead-in, and even if it’s semi-mysterious, its words should offer values that Gumby-ply the majority willpower to skate into that book. Is “Farm” such a word in the age of gaming and over-the-top pornification of just about everything except cereal (the sales of which are falling)? Well, maybe, a small voice counters, the extreme has been reached and the pendulum is returning to sanity, and in a sane world, farming is golden. Hmm.

Still, how many people would read my title and get it? And how many would go so far as to read the subtitle for clarification? My early assumption was that intrigued by the unusual title, they would certainly hone in on the subtitle. From the subtitle, they would have enough to prompt a quick “Look Inside” or a preview of sample pages. Then they’d be hooked!

Oh naïve self.

It is challenge enough for most people to finish a 279-page non-fiction book on new fitness philosophy without pictures that isn’t by an author with a Beverly-Hills-Household-brand-name like “Yogi Effuzio Zeus-Nero, former Navy SEAL,” or the like. I mean, I wanted to write an entrepreneurial mind-body conditioning book that provides an adaptive training catalyst for readers, not ensnare their self-critical envy for my beach-body, then move to Venice beach once I made it. I just want to afford to be able to travel and see our extended family more often while enabling all of us to be home more of the time. But I wanted to give something of quality to get there.

Maybe the Farm Your Training Day terminology in my book title is so smart, it’s dumb. The title tracks the adaptive principles and dimensions within that so broadly and deeply empower readers to trail blaze their own multidisciplinary training lives. That’s smart. The book is a reader-catalyst for achieving consistency with lifelong room to grow and modify one’s training life. Isn’t that what you’d expect from an adaptive fitness philosophy? That’s smart. The farming analogy is good for the reader because it does not create a need then sell to fulfill it. There is no fad-branded co-dependency with adaptive training. Instead, my book reveals that you already own what you need to exceed what any fad could ever sustain. All you’ve got to start with is the truth: you own your farm and your role as farmer of your mind-body. That is smart. And yet, true, smart concepts require implementation, and that’s what the 279-pages get at. But this fitness philosophy book does not market so well, since marketing is about stoking immediate-gratification impulses. As a marketing tool, my book is dumb.

Still, farming the mind-body recruits the readers’ minds and imaginations, something that teaches readers to fish for life by internalization while not giving them step-by-step photos they never have the patience to follow, being tantamount to serving-up cold fish they never finish cooking. Don’t shove knowledge at me, teach me how better to learn! Once readers use this catalyst to excel, they will hopefully overcome my sorry-title with solid reviews, and I’ll find my salary modestly paid before I die.

The scale of beginner to elite-level training is for readers to determine and navigate after consultation with their health care advisors, but my book’s baseline principles and training dimensions bring all readers to a zone of sustainable self-training consistency that forms their own unique, solid launching pad. The currently served, over-served, and underserved all stand to benefit from Farm Your Training Day. And the adaptive principles and dimensions don’t apply to physical training alone. They can apply to work, art, and service. There are takeaways for everyone.

The point of my book is not ‘who am I’ and never was. The point of my book is and has been, to help resolve roadblocks to wellness and conditioning in a country more flush with fitness brands than ever, but whose population continues upward in the obesity, overweight, and depression statistics. My answer, as may shock publishing houses, editors, and agents, comes from an ordinary person who researched, tested, and wrote the book with no intention of creating codependency on my brand for future training inspiration, but with the intention of empowering readers with a single purchase to become independent self-training athletes for-life, whose sports, arts, and physical work forms are their own. Blasphemy!

My approach is a catalyst for self-training ownership never to be co-dependent on contracts, subscriptions, fad-brands, or personalities to ascend to lifelong wellness, functional fitness, and improved performance in sport, art, and work. Time will tell if “farming” is a time-tested model for our training lives, and whether mass-corporate farming is any better than small, local, organic farming tailored to each individual and in the individual’s conscious control.

So what do you think? Should I change the title?

Mountain Dimension: 8.2 Mile Road and Trail Run at Eldorado Canyon State Park

ran up the road at the canyon base, then joined Fowler trail and doubled back up on the mountainside (see trail opposite the climber) …there were climbers on the rock today and the natural springs pool was packed with whooping, hollering, happy people escaping the heat…saw a lot of smiling people today.

Parked Eldorado Canyon corner store at Highway 93 and ran up Highway 170 through Eldorado Springs, a climber’s haven. Passed through town, past the sheer cliffs, and found Fowler Trail, running it back down to join back up with Highway 170 then back to start. The run was a little over 8 miles, about 50% road and 50% trail.

38 Special Fix for the Loop Flop: Compelled to Obsess, Obsessed to Compel

Forbes entrepreneur blogger Eric Schiffer writes about breaking free of obsessions to reach goals, here.

Obsessing focuses not on what you are doing or even what you want, but on ill-timed imperatives. To set a summit goal then obsess on each stepping stone will tire out the best of ascendants, leaving them on the mountain in the dark, taking forever.

Focus and obsession aren’t the same thing. Focus sees something as it really is in its context. Obsession loses track of what something actually is in favor of processing it, and fears that if it isn’t done now, the sky will fall. Too much tension blows energy, forgets priorities, and trends in error.

A good way to memorize this principle is by singing to yourself the following 38 Special song, or at least the lyrics:

Fitness that adapts stays with you.

Best,

Mike

Weight loss and the athletic spirit

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When you’re overweight: there is the you that tethers your mind and emotions about your body to your body, holding it down, and vice versa.

Then there is the you capable of sensing your separateness from your own body that respects what the body can do if allowed.

This is your spirit that can untie your body from the current emotional state to let it move. It’s kind of like taking your dog for a walk when you feel half asleep. Or letting the parking brake off of your car. Or stepping up during an emergency.

The part of you who rises above the emotion-shackled body and body-shackled emotional state is the athletic spirit, the worker’s ethic, and the artists inspiration. This you is capable of adaptive training.

Turns out, freed from the body-mind and its every notion about the body (from aches to analyses) the emotions will serve the athletic spirit. Once moving, these two will lead the mind and body to freedom and greater well being.

Whoa: The Blog that Fell Off of a…that Adapted

Cover the big rocks first in your priority flow...little ones will follow on soon enough.

Cover the big rocks first in your priority flow…little ones will follow on soon enough.

I’ve seen the apology and non-apology posts for no blogging. Remembering those, and remembering that I was not terribly worried that someone had not blogged regularly enough (unless maybe I knew they had a health challenge of some kind and there was a sudden change), I’ll not make a big deal out of my down-tempo in blogging.

That is consistent with the principles in my book for remaining consistent anyhow.

One of the principles of adaptive training, i.e. Farming the Training Day, is adaptive journaling and recording of the training events and training days we undertake as adaptive athletes.

Recording results is more or less data keeping and tracking progress using training metrics that matter to your goals. Still, bear in mind that if you’re crunched on time because life demands it, it’s more important that your body absorbs training of the quality needed at the moment than that you record every detail, or train in accordance with what you want to record. You may later catch up with estimates. That is not a problem so long as self-honesty guides your estimates.

Journaling is different. Journaling is more of your own personal sense and prose-flow-think-through about your training quality, experience, and the state of you. That too may be embraced or shelved, but let’s not let the recording and thinking about what we do be a prerequisite to freely doing what’s good for us and others. So, if being with others who need me is more important than thinking-through my training experience this day, I’ll shelve the journal or the blog or the data checklist, training, and then get back to my people.

That is what adaptive training does from my humble perspective. Can we be flexible enough to admit to ourselves that everything material and energetic in and around us changes, moves, and many of these states of being are temporary? When we do, we get a better sense of the value of completing our training, and sustaining the quality of life it was meant to support by keeping balance.

A kind of humorous skit could be made to illustrate this by imagining an action movie where the hero is training like a champion. A speeding train is heading for a broken track and the hero is called. “Not now,” he says. “I’m in the middle of a training routine, can’t you see that?”

So that is a comical illustration of what it might look like if we put off someone we love or someone who depends on us so that we can complete our training day according to some kind of inflexible regimen we establish, but that does not necessarily serve the best interests of our lives.

Ode to the Sometimes Early Afternoon Elixir of Post-Training Comfort and Consciousness

Open on self to defeat feelings of self-pity.

And below, note the coffee packet may be missing, probably because I took it.

Sadly, when out of coffee, I have been known to scrounge for instant coffee packets from K-ration boxes found in antique desks bought at estate sales for deceased beachcombers who used metal detectors on Easter island  to uncover Cargo Cult stashes in the early 1960s. Having been stored for decades alongside aging, sweating ammo, pineapple incense, and old desk varnish, there was more kick and fruity overtones in that coffee than when it was freeze-dried in the early ’40s.

Training through the Narrows

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There is an old adage as true today as ever: “Be kind, for everyone is fighting a great battle.”

A great battle in a relatively affluent country is being jostled and pulled in too many directions. We become acquainted with deciding what not to do instead of what to do. As many opportunities morph into ‘needs,’ it seems that some primordial, upstream-salmon gene activates in our brains and bodies, pushing us to grasp for more than we can do.

Many opportunities may knock, and when they do, be on the lookout for Mr. or Ms. Burnout at your door. This solicitor has bad teeth, dark circles under his eyes, a dehydrated look, burning flames of ambition receding in the irises, and a smoky smell – not cigarettes – but the reek of the grinding, engine-melting residue of neglect. For if we are not paying the insurance premium of exercise regularly, and descending from healthy habits because of it, succeed as we might elsewhere, we may not be around long enough to enjoy it.

One way to guard against a visit from this phantom of temptation is to adapt to it by physically training during his visit. This ends-justify-the-means ghost grasps at the wheedling, whining frustration of our unfinished goals; our haunting imperfections. It would ride them as your horses, pulling you and your life behind, clinging to uncertain ropes.

Imagine yourself answering the door as he or she knocks, earnestly beseeching you to listen and pointing to the pale horse out front; asking you to get behind this high-functioning stressor.

And you answer wearing your running shoes, shorts, and t-shirt. You tell the ghost you are going for a run, and you would love to listen to the pitch along your running route. As you establish your cadence on the asphalt, on the trail, and through the physical world of sunshine, air, seasonal scents, and sweat, you notice that he is having a very hard time keeping up. It seems you have come down to earth, and by doing so, entered a state of peace that cooled and moistened your brow, eased your mind, and helped you find your heart. Gratitude for what you have dawns in your heart, and you realize how much better you could devote yourself to what you have.

What is most important? Your run gives you a real opportunity to meditate on that. As you let the run go through your body, making you stronger, you let your mind drift over the topography of your life, and realize what are the tectonics, the foundations of your peaks and troughs. Soon you can distinguish between what is wise for you and what is not. You have outrun the pressure sell.

And that is a mighty fine pace for anyone to make.

Take Flight — a Memorial Day Reflection

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Dedicated to those who are here who can hear for those who made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of their fellows, their country, and principles for which this nation must still stand.

In the darkest nights of the soul the fuel for your Phoenix bubbles and boils around your spirit. From the ashes of some future ignition, burn, and flight, win or lose, you will rise again and be better than ever before; more capable in some way, known or unknown, to break through and see done what must be done as the reason for your being here. The darkest nights are never so dark as the dawn is light.

As the Marines say “pain is weakness leaving the body,” so the dark nights of the soul are selfishness of the past leaving the spirit, to be ignited in future service to those in need. These flammable drops may provide fires with which to liberate captives, empathize with and put sinners back on their feet, melt barbed wire, and elevate our human race just a little more before you die. No earthly reward could be better than simply completing our purposes for being. Each of us is given such a purpose, known or unknown, yet accessible more purely through standing again and believing.

The big picture is in our hearts, the sky within, from a vista point that can consider all people, all events, and all that must come with the indomitable commitment of a dedicated, singular spirit behind humble eyes, trafficking in the divine energy of love for all.

900 Today

Blogging has been sitting on a back burner…lots of work, and professional continuing-ed at present…

Today: Nine-hundred strength training exercise movements 60% External WR. 40% Bodyweight WR.

2-days ago: Vehicle Push-Pull.

Hike four days ago.

Soccer Scrimmage five days ago.

 

True independence

All words have a limited purpose, “for now.” “Independence” is that way. It is needed to get free of false supports, or false assumptions that lead to false needs. False needs erode time, health, and treasure. They tend to be sedimentary and inefficient for us.

We are wise to do an Independence Inventory from time to time to identify the ideas, notions, feelings, things, and habits that have settled in around us that are not aligned with the truest, most honorable, most loving, and most righteous (not self-righteous, but righteous by others) person each of us aspires to be. The “Look-Up” YouTube video of my previous post illustrates a thing from which we need independence.

Why try? Because what we aspire to be is what is in our heart.

Adaptive training seeks to adapt mind and body in service to our true heart, to our reason for being here. This means letting go of falseness, wherever found.

Free of false things, we are better prepared for interdependence in a way that will benefit, not harm others. We may “get up and walk.”

Like farming land, this farming of the heart, mind, and body is the purpose of training the mind and body to find harmony with the decisive, innocent spirit which we were given as children.

As I get older, I see that spirit of decisive innocence to clear the way for genuine love. Instantly, reflecting on this, trying to re-establish harmony with that divine spark, it is easy for me to see all my defects brought to light. My selfishness.

It is then I remember I must stand again, find my heart, and work the fields of this earthly testing ground another day.

Now Available on Amazon Kindle

 

Now on Kindle for $7.19

product_thumbnail10 adaptable, customizable principles, and 7 training dimensions / evolutions that provide a broad and deep base for whatever you’re training for, in sport, arts, or work. This is a book that harmonizes training philosophy and practical, very simple takeaways for sustaining a consistent, building, growing training life. Cheers!

Eggsparagus

 

Fresh, raw, chopped, thoroughly washed organic asparagus
Braised to warm in olive oil
Toss in 3 eggs and scramble them all around the asparagus
Sprinkle on grated cheese of choice (here finely grated mozzarella)
Sprinkle on Thyme
Serve Eggsparagus

…another version of eggsparagus:

http://thesproutdiaries.wordpress.com/tag/asparagus/

Enjoy with a Kale-Mango smoothie? Water? Enjoy and pretend the gift of food makes it your birthday! Pictured are leftover napkins from a birthday some weeks ago!

Embrace your least favorite element of training

the open sky

the open sky

If you delve into your least favored training areas, be it endurance, primary muscle strength, core strength, or application in sports, arts, or work, you will be raising the level of your foundational condition.

Let tedium become self-training in the gift of focus.

Let hardship be your elevator.

Let slowness be your path to thoroughness in preparation, and prevention.

Cheers!

Available Soon on Amazon Kindle: Farm Your Training Day: An American Dream of Sustainable Personal Fitness

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It’s an applied philosophy book with lifelong principles to take with you, practical idea catalysts for you to customize your training life, with enough depth and breadth to remain a long term resource.

One-Thousand Five

photoWeight resistance movements today….45 percent iron, 55 percent body weight.

I’m grateful for this training day, that it was sound, safe, and injury free, with lots of variety of movement during WRT.

May your training day be great paying off for you and yours, and service to others!

The Go-To Trail, Run, Ride, evolution…

Priorities yesterday precluded a trip to the mountains. And that is the time for one of my Go-To Trails in the hills.

A Go-To (hike, run, ride, routine) is a friend to you and your training days. This friend can enrich your life and make you more consistent. You may see your go-to as a “done that,” yet they are really more like snowflakes.

So yesterday I went to an open space at the edge of a nearby hillside neighborhood with a wonderful view of the place I couldn’t get to: the mountains. There, I start high, go low, then return high up hill. I hiked the downhills, and ran the uphills and flats.

I found new game trail loops, a section of oil and gas service road, and soft, green grass vistas. The ground was softened by recently melted snow. It was about 50F out.

Started with about 30 minutes of sun left, and the hundreds of red winged blackbirds in the wetland draws riving these hills were singing their hearts out. As soon as the sun was patently behind the mountains they all went totally silent.

My Go-To was not what I expected. It was better.

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No One Says You Have To…

Usually, no one says anything at all. They’re too preoccupied with their own lives to care too much about whether you are training or not. But someday, there may come a moment in time when everything slows down and you are in a situation. Not just any situation, but a big situation requiring that you be strong, fast, durable, fit, tough, coordinated, accurate, agile, and 100% committed.

So, just…

Strap on your helmet and your cycle shoes;

Slide into your road running shoes;

Tie-on your trail runners;

Pack your swim gear;

Wrap your hands;

Lay down your training mat;

Decide on the park with all the bars and props;

Remember that sprinting track;

Go to the mountain trail;

Hit the gym;

Arrive at the ropes course;

Turn the key, lock-up and go. Go out there, or in there, and find a new training experience this day.

Forget all the other times, forget you, forget them, forget it, forget whatever, and move-in-training with no catches, divisions, or hesitation, just the best form and flow of movement you can find.

It need not be perfect movement, but get moving, and work on improving each time you train until your weak is strong; slow is quick; quick is lightening fast; sluggish is sharp; hesitant is rhythmic; off-is-on; and you find within yourself ever-better performance each new evolution you train through.

Be patient and non-judgmental toward yourself. Simply let your analytic self see the objective, see the difference between what was done and the objective, and let your whole self get behind a new effort ever closer to, or right on the objective, getting better, closer, and ever more proficient.

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Each new flight is yours to navigate.

If you can do this once in training sessions during one day, you can do it every other training day the rest of your life, improving in some way, small, medium, or big. I’ll take any improvement I can get on any given day, and let the rest go until tomorrow.

Round 3 with the Versatile Round Timer

Three minutes can make a difference, fuel some inner heat, and force better breathing to keep on…

If you do this get cleared by your personal physician for it and get a tutorial on wrapping your hands. Have fun!

Note, the round timer has a clip on the back, suggesting it can accompany and time you at whatever kind of interval training effort you would like, except underwater:

IMG_2126and it says something really important for all of us, now matter who we are or what we’re training for. I took a close-up and made it the Header photo so you could read it!

Boost Raw Casserole

Washed, chopped organic yellow squash, broccoli, orange pepper, & gala apple in juice from fresh lemon and lime...

Washed, chopped, raw organic yellow squash, broccoli, orange pepper, & gala apple in juice of fresh lemon and lime…